Disneyland Meets the North Pole at Festival Of Trees

October 30, 2008
Kennedy Krieger's annual holiday fundraiser celebrates the most wonderful time of the year

(Baltimore, MD) If Santa had a theme park, this would be it! From Friday, November 28 through Sunday, November 30 the Maryland State Fairgrounds will transform into a magical winter wonderland when Kennedy Krieger Institute's 19th annual Festival of Trees comes to town. A family tradition since 1990 and the largest holiday event on the East Coast, Festival of Trees will usher in the holiday season with hundreds of exceptionally decorated trees, wreaths, and gingerbread houses; miles of toy train tracks; "reindeer" pony rides on Rudolph, Donner, and Blitzen; and a wonderland of holiday shopping.

Once again all will be merry and bright at Festival of Trees as children and families begin celebrating the most wonderful time of the year. Highlights of the 2008 Festival of Trees include:

  • Send Your Letter Directly to Santa at the Official Mailbox for the North Pole
    Children will gather at the Santa letter-writing station to send their wish lists to Santa himself, where he will decide who has been naughty or nice. With Express Delivery to the North Pole, this is an opportunity not to be missed!
  • Act Like a Kid Again in the Expanded SantaLand
    The SantaLand theme park, the ultimate fun zone for kids, features activities for children from ages 1 to 92. New features include a three-hole miniature golf course, Wii competitions, and a remote control racetrack and race car simulator. Guests can also enjoy old favorites such as gingerbread house making, carousel rides, and carnival games.
  • Hear a Holiday Tale from a Raven and an Oriole
    Join Baltimore Raven Matt Stover and retired Baltimore Oriole BJ Surhoff as they share their favorite holiday stories. Matt Stover will drop by for a holiday reading and a meet and greet session on Friday, November 28 and BJ Surhoff will read to guests on Saturday, November 29.
  • Enjoy Live Entertainment Including Performances by Milkshake
    From Irish dancers and comedians to puppeteers and magicians, families will be entertained by live shows every hour at Festival of Trees. Special guests Milkshake, the critically acclaimed children's rock band, will help usher in the holiday season with two performances, once at 11:00 am and again at 4:00 pm on Friday, November 28.
  • Find Something for Everyone on Your Wish List
    Those looking for the perfect holiday gift won't have to go far. Festival of Trees is a one-stop shop with more than 100 craft boutiques and a silent auction where bidders can win prizes such as a Carnival cruise for four in the "Owner's Suite," a Dell laptop, tickets to a NASCAR racing event, an exclusive tour of Camden Yards, hotel and travel packages, autographed sports memorabilia, and restaurant and theatre packages. Additionally, for just $1 enter into the Festival of Trees raffle sweepstakes for a chance to win a Disney cruise for four.

Needless to say Festival of Trees would not be complete without the more than 500 individually themed and decorated trees, wreaths, and gingerbread houses designed by local artists, businesses and community groups. Awards are given to the top designers in various categories and items are sold to raise funds for research, treatment and educational programs at Kennedy Krieger Institute.

General Admission to the 2008 Festival of Trees is $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 5-12 and seniors. Children 4 and under are free.

Friday, November 28
10:00 a.m. 9:00 p.m. Festival Open to the Public
10:00 a.m. 9:00 p.m. Live Entertainment
11:00 a.m. Milkshake Performance
4:00 p.m. Milkshake Performance
5:30 p.m. Holiday Story Reading with Baltimore Raven Matt Stover
Saturday, November 29
10:00 a.m. 9:00 p.m. Open to the Public
11:00 a.m. 9:00 p.m. Live Entertainment
Time TBD Holiday Story Reading with retired Baltimore Oriole BJ Surhoff
Sunday, November 30
10:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m. Open to the Public
11:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m. Live Entertainment

For more information about Festival of Trees, the public can call the Festival Line at (443) 923-7300 or visit http://www.festivaloftrees.kennedykrieger.org.

About Kennedy Krieger Institute

Internationally recognized for improving the lives of children and adolescents with disorders and injuries of the brain and spinal cord, the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, MD serves more than 13,000 individuals each year through inpatient and outpatient clinics, home and community services and school-based programs. Kennedy Krieger provides a wide range of services for children with developmental concerns mild to severe, and is home to a team of investigators who are contributing to the understanding of how disorders develop while pioneering new interventions and earlier diagnosis. For more information on Kennedy Krieger Institute, visit www.kennedykrieger.org.

Media Inquiries:

Jamie Watt/Jessie Benson
Profiles, Inc.
(410) 243-3790